Tagged: Joba Chamberlin

Bronx Bloopers

As I turned on the Yankee game yesterday it was right as Brett Gardner was caught stealing. When I first saw the play, I thought nothing of it. Then as they showed the replay in slow motion, I saw Gardner wearing a form of protection I have never seen before. He had what appears to be a special glove(?) of sorts that was built to protect your hand as you slide head first into a base. From what I can tell, it isn’t made of your typical leather material, but rather a hard plastic like material to prevent you from jamming or breaking your fingers against anything during a slide.

In theory, I understand the idea of wearing this glove. I can see it being very helpful as this is a very common way that base-stealer‘s, such as Gardner, get hurt. But this is baseball, it’s not football, I find the amount of protection players wear today to be a bit too much for my liking. Between the shin pads, foot pads, elbow pads and padded gloves that some guys wear while up at-bat, enough is enough already. Baseball isn’t meant to be played in body armor, I hope this trend doesn’t continue in the progression to even more unnecessary protection being worn on a baseball field.

Brett Gardner wearing his new glove(?)

Brett Gardner wearing his new glove(?)

 

With warm weather, we tend to see players wearing less layers under their uniforms. Joba Chamberlain on the other hand, took this opportunity to shed some extra hair he was lugging around. I for one have never been a fan of the Yankees clean-shaven rule, I find it pointless in this type of profession. I realize they allow mustaches, some Yankees were able to pull it off, Thurman Munson, Reggie Jackson and Goose Goosage to name a few, but this was just an awful look for him. Goodbye to Joba’s mustache, you will NOT be missed.

Joba's Mustache

Joba and his short-lived mustache

 

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Opening Day Thoughts

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Finally, we have meaningful baseball games to discuss. In what felt like an eternity of a wait, one of my favorite day of the year returned, Opening day. Despite the long odds Vegas may be giving your team to win the World Series, none of that matters on opening day. Every team gets a fresh start and every fan believes this will be “the year” for their team.

In New York we are looking at two teams going in different directions. We have the aging Yankees, who look to prove naysayers wrong, in that they are not an overall the hill bunch. There opening day lineup was far from intimidating, as they are dealing with a list of perinatal All-Stars , Jeter, Arod, Texeria and Granderson on the disabled list. Then we have the Mets, who’s roster is filled with players that may leave some fans asking “Who are these guys?“. The two teams couldn’t of gotten off to completely different starts,  the Yankees dropped their home opener to lifetime rival, Boston Red Sox, 8-2, while the Mets won in blowout fashion, with an 11-2 victory over the Padres.

The Yankees struggles began with C.C. Sabathia. He has a reputation for getting off to slow starts in April and May, and he showed no signs of that changing this year. Sabathia allowed all four of his runs in the second inning. Although he settled down, He was only able to last five innings on the day, not what the Yankees were looking for out of their ace. Francisco Cervelli did cut with a two run single, but that would be all the offense they would get. The bullpen went on to allow four more runs, three of which were given up by Joba Chamberlin. I’m not sure if I was more disturbed by how ineffective he was or that mustache.

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This was obviously not the start the Yankees were hoping to get off too. The offense, will have to play a different style of baseball than fans have been accustomed to in recent years. This team will not be breaking any home run records, if they want to keep it together while they wait for the Calvary to arrive, they  must learn to play a form of small ball. Most importantly, with the amount of injuries hurting their line up, it will be extremely important for the pitching staff to carry the load these next few weeks to keep them in ball games.

Mets fans are happy, as they sit atop the NL East, even if its only for today. They couldn’t of asked for a much better start yesterday. Jonathon Niese went 6 2/3’s strong, allowing only two runs, showing early signs that this could be a break out season for the left hander. What I enjoyed most about his start, was how he fought with Terry Collins to remain in the game heading into the 7th. It’s that type of attitude this team has lacked in years past and can only hope will spread among the rest of the roster.

The bats were alive yesterday as they recorded 13 hits on the day. Colin Cowgill, Daniel Murphy, Marlon Byrd, John Buck and Jon Niese all recorded two hits. The biggest hit of the day, came off the bat of Cowgill, who hit a grand slam in the 7th to cap off the day in the 11-2 win. The outfield is the biggest question mark coming into the season, which made is all the more important for Cowgill and Bryd to make an early impact. There wasn’t anything to complain about from a Mets standpoint yesterday, it will just be a matter if these journeyman players can continue to produce along with the young players progressing as the year goes on.

All in all, it is just one game for both the Mets and Yankees. For the moment, it has Yankee fans wondering if this is a sign of things to come and Met fans hoping they can pull off another Miracle year, only time will tell.